codename:zack

File 00/1: "The Smiling Skulls"

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Prologue

A small child, looking to be no older than 10, with dark, messy red hair that sank slightly beneath his shoulders, walked through the giant city, amidst a crowd of people all passing him by, going on with their busy lives. A few bloodstains were on his shirt, though nobody thought anything of it. Most of the people passing him by didn't even notice him. They were too busy with the errands they were running, the cell phones or iPods in their hands to even give the boy a passing glance. Despite the large number of people around him, he couldn't help but feel completely alone.

His parents considered him to be an accident from the moment he was born. Hooked on drugs from the meth lab they were running in the house, they locked him in the basement, so they wouldn't have to bother taking care of him. For hours he'd scream and cry, banging on the door, until eventually he gave up and fell asleep. Weeks later, when social services arrived, they found his body in the basement. Clothed only in his underwear, he was half dead from lack of nourishment. His ribs sticking out of his chest, his legs as thin as sticks. There was no fat around his face, making it look like a skull..

With no other family to take the boy in, he was placed into orphanages, where he would often go into violent outbursts against the other children that so often picked on him. He was eventually taken out of the Orphanage, the Nuns fearing he would kill a child. He would later be transferred to a Mental Health Facility.

For many years, that became his home. Or rather, his prison. While other kids his age were happily playing, or at school with their friends, he lived in a small padded cell. Every morning he'd awake and be given a series of pills to 'keep him calm' at least, that's what the staff told him. Over the years, he became indifferent to everything. He felt as though he wasn't really a part of this world, just watching it through a window. It was no different than the basement he had lived in..

As his 10th birthday soon approached, he felt his life was quickly passing him by. He wanted nothing more than to go out and see the world he had been kept away from. On the morning of his 10th Birthday, he had disappeared. When members of the clinic's staff entered his cell, they found two dead orderlies lying on the floor in a puddle of their own blood.

The boy entered the world, more alone than he had ever been. No family, not a single person to call a friend, no place to rest his head at night. Whenever he was hungry, he would steal what he needed to get by. He was often the victim of muggings by the thugs that lurked about the allies and slums of the city. As he grew, he soon saw the world as a very cruel place. He became filled with nothing but hatred and rage towards an unkind and unforgiving world..